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Daniel D. Teoli Jr.

Did you save any of your VHS tapes?

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Or transfer to DVD and trash?

I trashed the bulk of mine, except for some personal tapes. I kept them just in case the new fangled DVD didn't turn out to last.

Recently my archive acquired about 40 VHS tapes and now have to find head cleaners and working VHS machines. Ahhhh...the joy of going back in time!

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I saved some of the sentimental tapes, TV recordings, pre-recorded movies that mean something, but very few. I was never into video tape as a medium for watching movies or capturing TV. The money from my very first job went towards a laserdisc player and I've used disc's ever since. 

I have nearly all of my childhood recordings however. My main formats were Betamax, VHS and Hi-8. The latter of which, I have boxes and boxes of tapes, as the TV station I worked at used it for acquisition prior to switching to digital. So of course, I have gobs of tapes from my days at the station AND close to 300 DVCAM tapes from later in life. 

For a while, I kept a tape machine for all the formats, but funny enough, BOTH of my VHS machines failed on me. One had a bad power supply that fried the main power regulator on first plugin after sitting for a few years. The other one, had cracked mechanic gears and since it wasn't a great machine, I tossed it too. So I have Betamax, Hi-8 and DVCAM machines, all of them work perfect because they're commercial machines. It's getting a pesky VHS machine that works, which has been the most difficult issue. I should have kept one of the commercial machines I use to own. It's just, I have so many S-VHS tapes, I need that format as well. 

In terms of running a VHS machine, I would buy a commercial unit like the Sony SVO-5800, those things were pretty damn solid. You can just keep the top off and buy some shammy's and clean the heads between tapes. Tho, unless the tapes were stored improperly, they're probably ok. 

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